How to Make an Origami Vortex

Updated July 20, 2017

Despite its space-tech name, the Vortex paper aeroplane has never actually flown in space, but it does stand out among other paper aeroplanes due to its unique shape. Most paper aeroplanes at least vaguely resemble real planes, but the Vortex is actually shaped like a short, round tube. The Vortex is a strong flyer, and because of its basic design, is fairly simple to construct.

Position the sheet of paper vertically. Fold the paper horizontally to bring the two short edges together; do not unfold. Fold horizontally again.

Unfold the paper. There should be four evenly-spaced sections. Cut one of these sections off; discard the rest of the sections.

Fold the remaining section in half, lengthwise, then unfold. Fold the bottom edge up to meet the crease in the middle and unfold. Then fold the bottom edge up to the lower crease. Do not unfold.

Fold the bottom edge up using the folded edge to mark the crease-line. The loose edge should be hidden inside the bottom folded edge; do not unfold. Repeat this fold so that the bottom meets the crease line.

Form a circle by bringing the two short ends together and inserting one end into the fold on the other end. Fly the plane with the folded edge facing forward.


Taping the vortex is not necessary but can offer additional structural support.

Things You'll Need

  • Paper, 8 1/2 x 11 inches
  • Scissors
  • Tape (optional)
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About the Author

Christian Johnson has been writing professionally since 2010, when she started writing for a local non-profit blog and its related magazine "Musings." Her published articles include event reviews, movie reviews, interviews, bios and editorials. Johnson holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of California Riverside with a minor in French.